March 10, 2013
BERKELEY - Sophomore third baseman Chris Paul sparked the Golden Bears' four-run seventh inning with a one-out homer, propelling Cal baseball to an 8-4 win over Fresno State Sunday (March 10) at Evans Diamond. With the win, the Bears completed a four-game sweep of the Bulldogs, are undefeated at home (7-0) and have improved their overall record to 9-7.
Of Cal's seven home victories this season, three have been in extra-innings and five have been by one run. The Bears' four-game sweep of Fresno State (5-4 in 10 innings Thursday, 8-1 Friday, 4-3 Saturday, 8-4 Sunday) is believed to be the first time in school history Cal has swept a four-game series.
On Sunday, the Bears broke a 4-4 tie when Paul hit a homer to left field off of Fresno State reliever Tyler Stirewalt (0-1, 1.0 inning, three hits, four runs, two walks, one strikeout). Cal added three more runs in the inning on a bases loaded walk by freshman center fielder Devin Pearson, a bases loaded hit by pitch by junior shortstop Mike Reuvekamp and a sacrifice fly to left field by junior first baseman Devon Rodriguez.
Junior right-handed reliever Trevor Hildenberger (3-1) ended up winning his third game of the season, throwing the final 2.1 innings with no hits, no runs, no walks and two strikeouts. Hildenberger had come into the game in the seventh inning to get the Bears out of a bases loaded jam, and then got the Bulldogs out in order in the eighth and ninth innings.
Cal had started the day's scoring by notching three runs in the bottom of the first inning on a three-run double by Paul, who finished the day 2-for-5 with a career-high four RBI. Fresno State came back with two runs in the top of the second inning on a fielder's choice RBI from Brody Russell and an RBI single by Louie Payetta off of Bear sophomore right-hander Dylan Nelson.
Cal added another run in the second inning on Rodriguez's sacrifice fly to center field, but the Bulldogs tied the contest, 4-4, with a run in the third inning on an Aaron Judge home run, and a run in the fifth inning on Trent Garrison's RBI single. "I am proud of our squad, it is difficult to win a four-game series against anyone and we knew Fresno State was going to continue to battle," said Cal coach David Esquer. "I still feel our team is a work in progress with guys maturing into their roles. But, our players have stood up to our competition and our effort has been outstanding. Still, the teeth of our season is still ahead of us."
The Bears next contest is Tuesday, March 12 at 6 p.m. at Santa Clara. The game can be heard on KNEW 960 AM with Roxy Bernstein announcing.